Let’s talk big picture. You know I love Jacksonville.
-Jason, the best professional/amateur DJ in Jacksonville
The Best Thing About Jacksonville?
Not drinking water, silly. We’re talking about the fact that with 1,100 miles of navigable water Jax (yes people from Jacksonville call it that) has more shoreline than any other city in the nation. That’s 22 miles of beaches, 40 miles of the Intracoastal Waterway and the longest stretch of St Johns River in Florida. Trust us, if you’re interested in living on or near water it’s hard to beat Jax.
Notes from a local about the access to water:
It's also one of the few places where you can get the river and beach Florida landscapes at once. There are incredible state parks, beaches are clean and beautiful, the waves are perfect for boogie or surfboarding, and the airport is one of the cleanest and nicest I have ever been to.
The Worst Thing About Jacksonville?
Hard to believe but Jacksonville is the largest city by area in the lower 48 of these United States (damn you Alaska!). What issues can come with that much land when it’s also packed with people? For starters it can be a visual mess with all the sprawl, and crime is a problem given the difficulty supporting that much spread, but on the daily the challenge is getting around. You’re going to have to drive here given the thin to nonexistent public transportation that makes most cities with this much size face a similar issue.
Here's a local's pov on on the sprawl:
Huge portions of the city look like the average exit on 95 south because of the glut of suburban sprawl allowed to take place here. it leeches the city for all intents and purposes and it’s why you have to drive 30 minutes to get most places. also parking lots. everywhere.
Lifestyle of Jacksonville
In terms of Jacksonville’s vibes, residents often claim that the city feels more like a true southern city than the rest of its Floridian neighbors. Residents are generally associated with having ‘courtly’ personalities and a strong appreciation for patriotism. A lot of residents take pride in fitting seamlessly into the ‘small southern town’ persona and Jacksonville is often quoted as being a strongly religious area.
Thanks to the combination of weather and geographical location, a lot of social life in Jacksonville happens without a roof. Jacksonville has more shoreline than checks notes any city in the United States, with Neptune Beach, Jacksonville Beach and Atlantic Beach being three of the most popular. In addition to the shoreline, Jacksonville also boasts the largest urban park system in the nation, with over 80,000 acres worth of green space to help residents take advantage of a climate with winter temps often in the 60s. Jacksonville is also one of the nation’s best kept secrets for foodies, with a restaurant culture that rivals its neighbor Miami.
If you're interested in knowing what goes on in Jacksonville check out the calendar of events: https://www.visitjacksonville.com/events/
Workstyle of Jacksonville
While the average salary in Jacksonville is slightly below the national average, the low cost of living and low taxes are two factors that residents point to as working to offset that. The hospitality industry in particular is on the rise in Jacksonville as out-of-towners travel to the Sunshine State to take advantage of, well, the sunshine. Financial staples Deutsche Bank and JPMorgan Bank are two big employers for those who are financially minded, and if you drive south from downtown you’ll find the massive Naval Air Station military base that many Jacksonville residents call their workplace. Railway giant CSX Transportation is also headquartered downtown for those with experience in the transportation trade.
Why You Should Move Here Now?
Go South Young Man!
They used to say Go West Young Man! (we don’t agree with the inherent misogyny in that expression but it’s a saying) and now the mantra seems to be to head south instead. Low or no taxes, sunny weather, booming economies are driving people to the sunshine states. What that means is the economies benefit from the spending, the services grow to support the new residents, and the energy of the cities gets upbeat.